Courses and Qualifications


With so many courses available, you have many options when deciding what to study and where to study. Look closely at the courses offered by each provider, because different providers might offer a different type of specialisation or stream.

It's important to make sure that you are clear on what is being offered by each provider to make sure that you enrol in the course that is right for you.

Qualification Types

Vocational education and training (VET) prepares students for specific trades, crafts and careers at various levels by delivering education and training that focuses on developing specific skills and knowledge required for specific industries. VET courses provide many options from short courses, introductory and advanced certificates to get you into certain industries, diplomas that demonstrate high levels of technical knowledge and graduate certificates for particular occupations.

VET qualifications include Certificates I – IV, Diplomas, Advanced diplomas, Graduate certificates and Graduate diplomas.

Undergraduate study usually refers to a degree where a student is studying their first degree. Bachelor degrees are the most common qualification undertaken at university and typically take 3 years full-time study to complete. They introduce students to general fields of study rather than teaching specific skills needed for specific jobs. A Bachelor degree provides the principles and concepts relating to a field of study and general body of knowledge, this allows flexibility in your chosen field to build a career path without pinning it down to a specific occupation.

Undergraduate degrees are most commonly studied at university, although some private higher education providers and TAFES also deliver them.

Postgraduate study refers to the range of courses and research that are available to students who have already completed their first degree.

When you undertake postgraduate study, you can be awarded a Graduate certificate, Masters degree or a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD or doctorate). There are two main types of postgraduate study – research and coursework:

  • Research: This means you undertake supervised research over a substantial period of time (two or more years), which leads to a thesis (a written theory) or some major work.
  • Coursework: You can also do postgraduate study through coursework. This means you attend lectures and classes. You can gain a Postgraduate certificate, Postgraduate diploma or Masters degree through coursework, and this can take between six months and three years, depending on the type of study.

For more information about qualifications in Australia refer to the Australian Qualifications Framework webpage, at:

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